In an interview to ANI, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has opened up about the Surgical Strikes in Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir perhaps for the first time. Modi revealed that the date of the strikes on terror camps was changed twice due to safety and security issues.
The Surgical Strike was planned in response to the terror attack at Uri which resulted in the deaths of 20 soldiers. Modi said that there was a “rage” building within him, similar sentiments also prevailed in the Army as there were soldiers who were burnt alive in the attack at Uri. Hence, the strikes were planned.
The Prime Minister said, “That incident made me restless and there was rage within me. I had gone to Kerala and made a mention of this. Because I could not stop myself.”
The Prime Minister also revealed that he issued clear instructions that the operation should be over by sunrise. He also mentioned that he was up all night receiving live information as he was extremely worried about the safety of the soldiers. He said, “I gave clear orders that whether you get success or failure, don’t think about that but come back before sunrise. Don’t fall for the lure and prolong it.”
Modi said that he didn’t want any harm to befall the commandos as they were “willing to sacrifice their lives on our word.” He also revealed a moment in time when he became “anxious”. It was when the flow of information stopped for about an hour in the morning.
“In the morning, information flow stopped, for an hour. My anxiety increased. Even one hour after sunrise. That time was extremely difficult for me… then came the information that they have not reached back yet but two-three units have reached the safe-zone, so don’t worry. But I said I won’t be safe till the last man returns.”
Answering a question on the politicization of the Surgical Strikes, Prime Minister Modi said that it was started by the Opposition who started peddling the Pakistani narrative. Modi said, “It was necessary for Pakistan to speak like this (denial), to keep their morale intact. But what Pakistan was saying, was being said here too. To lend weight to their views, they were citing the Pakistani version. Politicization started from that point.”
As we had reported earlier, Arvind Kejriwal’s demand for providing video proof of surgical strikes carried out by the Indian Army had found backers across the border when Pakistanis had come out in support of Kejriwal.
Pakistan had been vehemently denying the occurrence of surgical strikes on its soil by Indian armed forces in 2016, in which approximately 40 Terrorists were killed when Indian Army personnel ambushed 4 terror launchpads and subsequently destroyed them. Indian Armed forces have already put out videos corroborating their claim of conducting a successful Surgical Strike deep inside Pakistan occupied Kashmir.
The Prime Minister also asserted that it would be “big mistake” to think that Pakistan will mend its ways after a single surgical strike. It would take a long time for them to start behaving themselves, he said. He also said that the Army was given a “free hand” to plan and execute the surgical strikes and all necessary equipment was provided.
The Surgical Strikes have also provided the inspiration for a Bollywood movie set to release on the 11th of January: Uri.